In all my lifetime (say 2 decades and some), I have lost two major stories that I remember. Actually it might be more than two -I’m sure it is more than two but I can’t seem to remember what other stories were on that flash drive. When I saw I lost everything, I lost everything. All my character sheets, images that inspired me, any notes I might have made regarding the plot that I can’t remember . . . the edited version that I was so proud of.
Unlike the first time, I didn’t cry. My sister might have disliked me very much on that day but she forgave me. I think. As a matter of fact, a novel currently named Darkest Night (co- authored by my sister and I) has been lost twice. And yes, this is the novel I threw away by mistake underneath my lunch tray when I was in high school. My physics teacher freaked out when I came into class crying . . . ah, memories.
And once again, ladies and gentleman, I have lost other stories (I’m being redundant, aren’t I?). My flash drive mysterious disappeared from my purse. And why was I carrying a flash drive in my purse? Because I tend to need my flash drives when I don’t have them. It’s a complicated relationship. Long story short, whatever is on that flash drive is gone for good.
It’s not like I had any personal information on there. I hope . . .. no, I think it was only for stories. Stories that I don’t remember where on there and that I would have to rewrite again. In the long run, it was like I lost my 270 page novel that I want to publish. I guess there is a silver lining? But now that I think about it, I might have all those documents stored in Dropbox. Of course, they’re unedited but that beats trying everything up again, right?
Plus, I like to hand write all my stories on paper first before I even think about typing it up in a word document. Not only can I write really fast, I can also edit at least twice before the story ever goes into a digital format. On paper I can cross things out and just think about what to write next. To me typing something up in on a computer kind of finalizes the whole process – even though it doesn’t – my brain just thinks that way. That also explains why I had so much trouble editing my papers in college.
However, if there is a lesson to learn about all of this ( a lesson I taught myself), is that starting over isn’t all that bad. At least for me, I can remember vaguely what I wrote and can replicate some of the same sentences from before. It also gave me room to step away from the manuscript. Sure it is possibly the worst type of break but it is a break nonetheless.
I mentioned before that I write my stories out and keep those pages even after I’m done with them (for the most part). I can always go back and retype them and although there was plenty of despair in my chest, I powered through it. All I can do is write. Any anger towards myself won’t really make a difference. I like to see this as another obstacle I need to overcome.
Thank you for listening to my rant. Until next time,